The "I hate Christmas" thread, deluxe edition

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MegB

Bacchus wrote:

I love using essential oils. Even took a course in it once and used to teach it (as well as making your own liquers) at pagan festivals

A friend of mine started making bath and cosmetic products because of her sensitivities, with combinations of essential oils maximized for therapeutic effect. Bar none, they are the best things ever. Lip balm, foot scrubs, green clay facial masks - they're all better than any commercial product I've ever come across.

I hope you can continue with your instructional essential oil sessions in some venue. I'm not a big proponent of alt health remedies, but I've found essential oils to have real benefit, especially given that they have such a long history of being used to great effect medicinally. Fortunately, we're no longer burned at the stake for such knowledge. At least not literally.

Bacchus

I have made healing liquers and the like before

 

And everyone says my lip balms are de best ;o)

 

As I speak Im making milk bath and getting ready for the first batch of bath salts (cypress, pine and rosemary)

 

MegB

Rosemary and bergamot are my faves. My only issue with EOs is the expense. I did the numbers on making my own, but the difference was minimal.

Aristotleded24

6079_Smith_W wrote:
I almost feel for they guy, because it was such a tone-deaf comment. Clearly he was trying to be friendly, hip, and inclusive, and had no idea what he was saying.

I am a Christian, I am very much in favour of keeping "Christ" in "Christmas," and I would never dream of addressing non-believers in the disrespectful fashion that Pallister did. It speaks volumes about his lack of judgement.

bagkitty bagkitty's picture

Despite the best efforts of my family, I am not a Christian. I am fine with Christmas and Christmas greetings... I am, though, amazed at how many Christians seem to think there is any major theological importance to the holiday. I understand the argument that without Christmas there couldn't have been Easter, but only in the same way as if Mary had fallen down a flight of stairs while carrying her child or if Herod has succeeded in his decree to kill the male children, or if MJ&J ran into a poisoned well on their little excursion to Egypt. The "War on Christmas" crowd have chosen a really strange hill to defend in the culture wars.

Aristotleded24

bagkitty wrote:
Despite the best efforts of my family, I am not a Christian. I am fine with Christmas and Christmas greetings... I am, though, amazed at how many Christians seem to think there is any major theological importance to the holiday. I understand the argument that without Christmas there couldn't have been Easter, but only in the same way as if Mary had fallen down a flight of stairs while carrying her child or if Herod has succeeded in his decree to kill the male children, or if MJ&J ran into a poisoned well on their little excursion to Egypt. The "War on Christmas" crowd have chosen a really strange hill to defend in the culture wars.

There is a much deeper theology surrounding Christmas than the "isn't-it-great-that-a-cute-baby-with-magical-powers-has-been-born-to-save-us" popular understanding that is pervasive in our culture. The birth of Jesus Christ happened among the Jewish people who were at the time under occupation from the Roman Empire. The Jews looked back very fondly on the reign of King David, and looked forward to a time when that glorious reign would be restored. This is why Matthew and Luke both trace the ancestral line of Jesus through King David. When you hear people talk about "the prophecies being fulfilled," they overlook the fact that the traditions around Christ's birth developed long after the fact (most people don't realize that St. Paul's writings predate the Gospels) and were remembered through a Jewish lens, hence why the Jewish Christians saw that the prophecies were fulfilled. Where it really comes alive (for me anyways) is in the Slaughter of Innocents (where there's a great sermon posted on this topic in the other Christmas thread). According to Matthew's Gospel, King Herod was so troubled by the birth of Christ that he ordered every male child under the age of 2 to be killed. The birth of this child signaled a hope for an opressed people that so disturbed those in power that the powerful went to great lengths to crush it, but despite the violence, the child survived, to show that God's justice will always prevail. Of course, that theology seems to be lost on the "War on Christmas" crowd.

Are we dealing with historical events that actually did take place? In all honesty, likely not, but there is a deeper theological truth present to those who wish to look.

6079_Smith_W

Aristotleded24 wrote:

I am a Christian, I am very much in favour of keeping "Christ" in "Christmas," and I would never dream of addressing non-believers in the disrespectful fashion that Pallister did. It speaks volumes about his lack of judgement.

Yeah, I agree. It was shockingly stupid, moreso because he was trying to be friendly. Personally, I thought he blew it as much by declaring his own faith as if the rest of us don't have a clue what Christmas is, and he felt he needed to fill us in on its real meaning.

As for the holiday, whether it happened, and when (and if so, it was probably in the spring), the liturgical Christmas isn't just about a birth, but is, as you say, loaded with symbols., and layered with other faiths - including the astrological sign in the heavens.

(and you only have to read a bit of Shakspeare to realize that the classical pantheon was a more living part of the common imagination than the Christian one).

And it's not as if those connections were ever some great secret. The Romans knew exactly what they were doing when they picked that day, just as the Puritans knew it was Pagan when they banned it.

 

 

laine lowe laine lowe's picture

Back on track, this is cute:

http://bcove.me/4am829ew

A Ken Burns inspired mokumentary.

Unionist

Aristotleded24 wrote:
The birth of Jesus Christ happened among the Jewish people who were at the time under occupation from the Roman Empire. The Jews looked back very fondly on the reign of King David, and looked forward to a time when that glorious reign would be restored.

Nah. Not us. We looked forward to overthrowing the oppressors by our own forces - not yearning for some pretender to some royal simp's throne, nor for pie in the sky when we die. Nope.

Doesn't your book actually record this stuff (John 18)?

Quote:
37 "So you are a king, then!" said Pilate. Jesus answered, "You are right to say I am a king. In fact, that's the reason I was born. I came into the world to give witness to the truth. Everyone who is on the side of truth listens to me."

38 "What is truth?" Pilate asked. Then Pilate went out again to the Jews. He said, "I find no basis for any charge against him.

39 But it is your practice for me to set one prisoner free for you at Passover time. Do you want me to set 'the king of the Jews' free?"

40 They shouted back, "No! Not him! Give us Barabbas!" Barabbas had taken part in an armed struggle against the country's rulers.

I'd be down for celebrating Barabbas' birth.

Aristotleded24

Whatever unioninst. We each have our own perspectives, neither one of us is going to change the other's, so I'm not getting into this with you.

Aristotleded24

6079_Smith_W wrote:
And it's not as if those connections were ever some great secret. The Romans knew exactly what they were doing when they picked that day, just as the Puritans knew it was Pagan when they banned it.

Be that as it may, the Christmas tradition has obviously grown throughout the past 2000 years, and certainly grew since the times of the Romans, the pagans, etc. Also, the great importance of Christmas is a relatively recent phenomenon. I've actually read (don't have the links available, sorry) that Christmas was nearly on its way out the door until Charles Dickens, among other things, was credited with reviving it. Thing is, I believe Dickens wrote "A Christmas Carol" to talk about the social realities present in his day, not out of concern to revive a particular holiday.

Unionist

Aristotleded24 wrote:

Whatever unioninst. We each have our own perspectives, neither one of us is going to change the other's, so I'm not getting into this with you.

Never asked you to. This is a discussion board, however, as we both know.

But if you actually told me something new, persuasive, convincing - you might very well change my perspective. But what you said upthread? Nah. The Jews were looking for a Barabbas, not a Jesus. As we should do today, all of us.

Actually, this Christmas stuff (if you subtract the purely commercial aspect and assume that anything remains) is strikingly reminiscent of all the "Mandela is the apostle of love and reconciliation and forgiveness" horseshit which is being used, right now, to hijack his memory and contribution.

That's one of the main reasons I hate Christmas. It's the lesson I don't buy. Maybe I don't understand them well enough.

Same with Passover, though slightly different. God freed the Hebrews from slavery in Egypt (they were too useless to free themselves, I guess), and led them on a crusade to kill and plunder and dispossess on their way to a "promised land" which belonged to others. It's a good holiday for those that are trying to lead the Jewish people today on the path of colonialism and racism and dispossession of others.

Hanukkah, on the other hand, is a good one IMHO - a celebration of resistance and struggle (if you omit the silly little "miracle"). That's likely why Passover is considered a big-time religious holiday (synagogue, Sabbath-like restrictions, etc.), while Hanukkah actually has no religious manifestations.

We really should start a process of revisiting these holidays - especially given the fact that they are exclusive and ghettoizing. Does no one question Christmas? Really? I wouldn't be surprised, given that no one (other than me) questions Passover. Gotta start doin' it, bro.

 

6079_Smith_W

Oh don't be such a humbug, U.

If anything the fact that people demanded the popular holiday back  after the Puritans banned it is something in its favour.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christmas_in_Puritan_New_England

And that the merry-making gets under the skin of the prudes? Even better.

And besides, without the modern crass commercial version what would we have to hate?

 

6079_Smith_W

Here. Have an ugly, inappropriate Christmas sweater!

http://www.amazon.com/Christmas-Sweater-Sweater-Costume-Reindeer/dp/B00F...

Delivered by Santa's fleet of amazon drones.

Unionist

6079_Smith_W wrote:

Oh don't be such a humbug, U.

Gotta be. Christmas excludes people of other faiths and atheists, yet it is considered an integral part of this White Christian society in which we live. And progressive people are supposed to be fine with that?

I just thought I'd correct some a-historical stuff above about how Jews were hankering after some king to save them. No. Not then, not now.

If we don't expose the bullshit, who do you expect will do it? Tom Mulcair? Elizabeth May? Justin Trudeau?

"Pandering" is their shared middle name. I'm an iconoclast. Pity we aren't all.

Quote:

And besides, without the modern crass commercial version what would we have to hate?

That part is good for the economy. It's the spiritual part which is crap.

 

Aristotleded24

I said I wouldn't do this, but:

Unionist wrote:
The Jews were looking for a Barabbas, not a Jesus. As we should do today, all of us.

The Book of Exodus (chapter 3) records the story of Moses and the burning bush, the story where God calls Moses to free God's people from slavery in Egypt. The story doesn't explicitly describe Moses asking God how God could allow God's people to suffer for a long time, but it's reasonable to conclude that he did ask that question. God then tells Moses to go and free the people. Setting aside the supernatural (and depending on who you talk to, the tribal) aspects of that story for a moment, my take-away from that has always been that action on the part of people is important. In other words, don't sit around and hope for something big to happen on its own, confront the Pharaoh directly and risk his wrath for the sake of justice. There are many political aspects of the Bible that have been completely watered down to, as you've alluded to, serve the institutional power structures of established religion in any form, but they are there and were well known within these communities at the time they were written. (Writers like John Shelby Spong, Marcus Borg, and John Dominic Crossan, among others, have desrcribed these ideas.)

When you get right down to it, I don't see how my critique of Christmas is, in substance, much different than that of the non-believers in this thread. I just arrived at it from a different starting point and from a different point of view.

Unionist

Aristotleded24 wrote:
Setting aside the supernatural (and depending on who you talk to, the tribal) aspects of that story for a moment, my take-away from that has always been that action on the part of people is important. In other words, don't sit around and hope for something big to happen on its own, confront the Pharaoh directly and risk his wrath for the sake of justice.

Actually, there is zero account in Exodus or elsewhere of the slightest resistance or struggle on the slaves' part. It's purely Moses acting on God's behalf. And it's ugly. Here's what I wrote in 2009, edited in March 2013 to correct a small error. The rest of my posts in that thread have, of course, disappeared, by the grace of God:

Quote:

I think the Passover tradition is unreclaimable.

Passover is portrayed as being a celebration of liberation from slavery. I used to kid myself about that too. Here is how I have come to understand the lessons of the Passover story:

1. The oppressed (Hebrew slaves in Egypt) are utterly powerless without external intervention (Yahweh).

2. The Israelites are strangers in a strange land. They don't really belong where they are - hence, their liberation entails flight, rather than fight.

3. They must have blind faith in their external liberator - to the extent that when they momentarily hesitate, yearn for their old homes, and worship an alien god, they are mercilessly condemned to wander and die in the desert. Only one single Israelite (Yehoshuah Bin Nun, aka Joshua) survived the trek. Even Moses died while watching the end of his journey just beyond his grasp.

4. Their ultimate "liberation" is possible only through the expulsion / extermination of the indigenous residents of Canaan (the "promised" land).

It's an allegory for modern imperialism, for antisemitism (the wandering and alien Diaspora Jew, existing everywhere and belonging nowhere), and the Zionist colonial enterprise.

The story may have inspired some in the past, but that time is gone. People today must rely on themselves for salvation, and they must not achieve it by enslaving others. Like the angel of death in the story, we are well advised to pass over this holiday.

ETA: (4 years later) - Re-reading this thread, I just realized I was wrong in #3 above. In fact, two Israelites survived the God-slaughter and were allowed to enter the Promised Land. The other was Caleb ben Yephuneh. I would estimate that doubles the historical validity of the Jews' claim to Palestine.

6079_Smith_W

Yes of course. Nonstop praying.

Hey, did somebody say white?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7S-IidmcSN8

 

(edit)

Sorry, cross posted with you A24

I think I posted this one a few years ago, but here's yet another biblical take on it:

http://www.av1611.org/othpubls/santa.html

 

 

6079_Smith_W

You guys.

There is no archaeological evidence of any slavery in Classical Egypt during the time the pyramids were built. That story is a myth.

But if we want to fight, how about this?

http://www.mindjolt.com/the-snow-runs-red.html

Or you could play happy wheels Santa Claus. I'd post the link, but it is both rude and bloody.

cco

Unionist wrote:

Hanukkah, on the other hand, is a good one IMHO - a celebration of resistance and struggle (if you omit the silly little "miracle").

The oil lasted eight times longer than it should have. Isn't that the perfect fantasy/fable for Harper's Canada?

Much better than all this forgiveness bullshit, surely.

Mórríghain

6079_Smith_W wrote:

And besides, without the modern crass commercial version what would we have to hate?

 

Don't worry, people never run out of things to hate.

Bacchus

Rebecca West wrote:

 

Rosemary and bergamot are my faves. My only issue with EOs is the expense. I did the numbers on making my own, but the difference was minimal.

 

Try new directions. They have the best prices and just about everything in raw materials

 

MegB

Bacchus wrote:

Rebecca West wrote:

 

Rosemary and bergamot are my faves. My only issue with EOs is the expense. I did the numbers on making my own, but the difference was minimal.

 

Try new directions. They have the best prices and just about everything in raw materials

 

Will do. For others, total atheist here. It's a holiday. Deal with it.

lagatta

Weren't a lot of the Victorian Christian traditions things that Vicky's German spouse Albert brought from his native country? The tree, for one (which obviously derives from Pre-Christian Religions of the Germanic peoples) and several other elements. German and Dutch immigrants had also brought some of these practices to the New World.

I don't celebrate Christmas, but it is a good time to get friends together for an elaborate supper, any time between Xmas and New Year's, since at least here in Québec many workers get the week off. I do not give Christmas presents, I did to my mother, but she died (at a very old age) a few years ago -she was  42 when I was born.

6079_Smith_W

@ lagatta

Yup, though I think some bend over backwards to prove that it came from the bible, not from the belief that the souls of ancestors went to live in the evergreens during the winter:

http://www.examiner.com/article/origin-of-the-christmas-tree-1

But speaking of great Germanic Christmas traditions:

http://www.krampus.com/who-is-krampus.php

shartal@rogers.com

Re: Unionist post on Jews wanting a King to save them.. well yea.. Something only ex orthodox will understand but in my youth I was Beth Yacov. The king is the messiah and we pray for his coming 3 times a day. For the religious Tikun olam means bringing the messiah.

Unionist

ETA: Quite a beautiful song, actually. Not the words necessarily, but the melody. "I believe, with full faith, in the coming of the Messiah." The next part, with typical Jewish irony, says: "And even if he takes his old sweet time, still and all, I believe!" (Slightly free translation.)

 

shartal@rogers.com

In true faith I believe in the coming of the Messiah . I always liked the Pirkeh Avot explain for Tikun Olam. You are not responsible for the bringing of the messiah, but you are responsible to contribute to the bringing of the messiah/ Tikun Olam

Ghislaine

Question for other parents: Does anyone else have a problem with the whole lying to your kids about Santa, North Pole, keeping a list stuff?? It doesn`t seem like we have any choice but to go along with this charade, but I just don`t feel right about it. I mean, if we bucked the trend I am sure our 3.5 yr old would share her newfound knowledge at daycare and we would get some angry calls from parents. (Also the big guy is making an appearance at daycare this Friday). But still. Both my husband and I find this a challenge. And aside from the falsehoods, it also convinces kids to be good just because Santa is watching and also that Christmas is just about asking for and getting stuff. 

Also, has anyone else tried for multiple to years to get grandparents to not spoil kids at Christmas?? Seriously it has caused family friction. They get SO SO MUCH...an unbelievable amount. I don`t want to push it too much as they help us out with sick days, picking up kids, etc., etc. and it gives them so much joy. But, I just really don`t want my kids to be spoiled. I can remember getting 1 gift from each set of grandparents at Xmas when I was a child. 

These are a couple of the things I hate about Christmas. Also I am moving with 2 small children 1 week before Xmas, so that adds to the fun!!!

Ghislaine

....and don`t get me started on "Elf on a shelf"!!!!! Hate that for so many reasons. 

6079_Smith_W

@ Ghislaine

I think it's only a problem if withholding Santa is used as a threat. I have never heard of that elf game before. I'm okay with having real consequences; the wrath of mythical beings sets a bad precedent in my mind.

Kids always figure it out on their own - or from other kids. Our youngest (8) has already accused us of being the ones responsible for it all. I haven't confirmed or denied it. When she's old enough to sit up all night she can figure it out herself.

As for gifts, we already give some donations as gifts. One solution I have heard to too many gifts is to make some of them disappear for a few months and bring them out again. Kids usually forget about them before too long anyway.

Unionist

Ghislaine wrote:
I mean, if we bucked the trend I am sure our 3.5 yr old would share her newfound knowledge at daycare and we would get some angry calls from parents.

Amazing insight, actually.

Never mind telling your kid the truth about Santa Claus. Wouldn't the same thing happen if you told your kid the truth about God and Jesus (have you?), about how capitalism is evil and needs to be replaced, about Stephen Harper, about how little babies are made, about how it's ok for boys to kiss boys and girls to kiss girls, about how World War I was just meaningless mass slaughter because some old colonial empires didn't want to die without spilling floods of blood first, about how it's very good for people of different religions and colours to date and get married...?

I'll bet you'd get some angry calls.

And that's why people don't tell their kids the truth about lots of stuff.

In fact, that's why people don't tell themselves the truth.

ETA: And... great to see you around, Ghislaine! Don't take so long between visits.

lagatta

My MP, Alexandre Boulerice, got shat upon by the Cons for telling the truth about "The Great War".

From Wiki article on him:  On April 10, 2007, Boulerice wrote on a Quebec left-wing politics blog, Presse-Toi A Gauche,[6] praising those who objected to and actively resisted Canada's participation in the First World War stating it was "a purely capitalist war on the backs of the workers and peasants". Boulerice further criticised the Harper Conservative Government's celebration of the Battle of Vimy Ridge saying that "thousands of poor wretches were slaughtered to take possession of a hill.[7]

Come on, Alexandre, not "purely capitalist"! Essentially capitalist, yes, but there was also the tragi-comic opera aspect about the belligerent parties all being inbred relatives from the Crowns of Europe...

Personally, I don't think I'd tell children anything about Santa Claus, but since I don't have any, it's a moot point.

6079_Smith_W

Unionist wrote:

Never mind telling your kid the truth about Santa Claus. Wouldn't the same thing happen if you told your kid the truth about God and Jesus (have you?), about how capitalism is evil and needs to be replaced, about Stephen Harper, about how little babies are made, about how it's ok for boys to kiss boys and girls to kiss girls, about how World War I was just meaningless mass slaughter because some old colonial empires didn't want to die without spilling floods of blood first, about how it's very good for people of different religions and colours to date and get married...?

Thing is, I have visions of poetic justice if I try too hard to program my kids to my values.

I have told my kids I don't believe in any god, and that when we stop, we stop. Our eldest says he believes in a god (and while I haven't pressed too hard on it, I wonder where he got that from).

The best thing I can do is tell them what I believe (you are absolutely right there) and insist they examine it and figure it out for themselves.

As for benign myths, I have no problem with Santa and the tooth fairy, and I have never lied about them being real.

Though the sex thing is kind of funny. I remember hauling out one of my dad's high school biology texts and showing everyone in grade 1 where babies really came from. The issue came up with our youngest a few days ago and her reaction was "ewww.... I don't want to talk about that".

And I look forward to the day when no one ever has to have the talk about orientation; we never have (not in the revelatory sense, that is), because our kids have always seen the full spectrum of it around them, and never learned that there was anything wrong with any of it.

 

 

 

 

Caissa

I have no problem lying to children about Santa Claus, Ghislaine. Arguing with grandparents about spoiling their grandchildren isn't worth the fallout that usually happens.

Aristotleded24

Ghislaine wrote:
Question for other parents: Does anyone else have a problem with the whole lying to your kids about Santa, North Pole, keeping a list stuff?? It doesn`t seem like we have any choice but to go along with this charade, but I just don`t feel right about it. I mean, if we bucked the trend I am sure our 3.5 yr old would share her newfound knowledge at daycare and we would get some angry calls from parents. (Also the big guy is making an appearance at daycare this Friday). But still. Both my husband and I find this a challenge. And aside from the falsehoods, it also convinces kids to be good just because Santa is watching and also that Christmas is just about asking for and getting stuff.

Hi Ghislaine! I'm not a parent, but I absolutely agree with the sentiment of your post. Seriously, what gives? Besides, this day and age, kids know things at a much younger age. "Oh, but children have to use their imagination!" Really? I find that the best way to have children use their imaginations is to give them space to play without us know-it-all adults butting in and hovering over them.

I do find it a bit over the top, especially with all the TV shows and movies. It's one thing for children to believe because they naturally believe what we tell them. But when you hear grown adults talking on TV and radio call-in shows about "Santa being good to them," and even the bloody NORAD doing their annual "tracking Santa" nonsense, that just blows my mind, because these people know that the whole thing is patently false.

While I'm at it, [url=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Ro3wuck_ro]here's a Christmas message from Bill Maher.[/url]

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

We did the Santa thing with our kids.  We never explicitly said he was real or not, and Santa gifts were never big-ticket items - just a stocking full of candy, odds and ends and a small gift.  It's okay for kids to believe in magic for a while, and it's actually not a bad exercise for them to work it out when they are ready to.  Just like working out whether gods and ghosts are real.  Give them the tools, they'll use 'em.

My oldest worked it out on her own, asked a a few times and got non-committal answers, told me her conclusion and there were no tears or feelings of betrayal.  The younger one knows, obviously, she's 12 - but in hedging her bets, she's not saying so.  I'll probably keep on doing the Santa stockings because I like it, but I think she's worried it will stop when she admits she no longer believes. 

cco

But if you didn't lie to your kids about Santa, there would never come that day when they learn a very important lesson: Adults will lie to you about anything and everything, not just to protect you, but for reasons as silly as nostalgia, vicarious thrills, and keeping other adults happy.

Keep some books on skepticism handy for when they finally figure it out. Whether or not to acompany it with ballons that read "SUCKER!" is, of course, the choice of the individual parent.

6079_Smith_W

Sure, although if we want to get technical we never specified whether it was the metaphorical Santa or some real old guy eating those cookies. But as I said, I have never lied about it. They ask a question like "how can he do it all in one night" and I say I don't know, what do you think?

The kids figured out a few years ago that all those mall santas aren't the real one - just helpers. I am sure as the mechanics of the rest of it dawns on them it will be no more of a heartbreaker.

In fact, I'd say it's a product of our overly serious, overly rational age that a question like whether Santa Claus is a real person is given such weight at all. Of course he's not a real person; that doesn't mean the idea is any less significant than any other product of our imagination, whether it be zombies, Zeus, or still-living Elvis.

Maybe some adults are scarred forever by their parents' heartless lies, but I'm not. Besides, TB is right.. once the game is over, the magical font of toys dries up.

And truth be told, our eldest has a more personal relationship with the tooth fairy. He has gotten coins from all over the world. I am sure he has figured it out, but is still fooling us by acting like he's unaware.

 

 

 

6079_Smith_W

Back to things to hate...

The Star Wars Holiday Special - which George Lucas said he would smash every copy of if he had the chance .... is now available on DVD

http://mentalfloss.com/article/29580/horrible-star-wars-holiday-special

They made a christmas album too (which included Jon BonJovi's first professional gig):

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christmas_in_the_Stars

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OSWCQ7ALEms

 

Slumberjack

Unionist wrote:
Only one single Israelite (Yehoshuah Bin Nun, aka Joshua) survived the trek. Even Moses died while watching the end of his journey just beyond his grasp.

Quote:
In fact, two Israelites survived the God-slaughter and were allowed to enter the Promised Land. The other was Caleb ben Yephuneh.

So as I read, it was Yehoshuah and Caleb who carried on with the murderous rampage throughout the region, after which they impregnated one another, and the begatting started all over again?

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

cco wrote:

But if you didn't lie to your kids about Santa, there would never come that day when they learn a very important lesson: Adults will lie to you about anything and everything, not just to protect you, but for reasons as silly as nostalgia, vicarious thrills, and keeping other adults happy.

Keep some books on skepticism handy for when they finally figure it out. Whether or not to acompany it with ballons that read "SUCKER!" is, of course, the choice of the individual parent.

There are parents who worry about that, cco, and others who, like yourself, make the statement, but really, I don't think I know anybody who was scarred by believing in Santa.  It doesn't seem to have been the case with my kids or any other kids of my acquaintance who are around the same age.  It also depends on how it's managed.  If you think Santa is the bearer of big ticket items and then at an arbitrary age it's snatched away from you, that's a lot more hurtful than treating Santa as a smaller part of the Xmas celebration who brings a little something and you get to work it out for yourself when you're ready.  (BTW, I really dislike parents who give major gifts from Santa - not all families can afford it and it leaves some kids feeling bad - which is why larger or more expensive gifts are credited to Mum and Dad at our house.)

I just don't buy that kids process the end of the Santa myth as you've described - that's a very adult way of looking at it, and kids are wired very differently.

You know, you could make the same argument about fiction.  Is fiction all lies, or is there a reality to it that goes beyond the strictly fact-based world?  I like to think it's the former. 

PS - Smith, I will continue to do up Santa stockings until the kids either leave home or ask me to knock it off.  I love it.  So much fun shopping for the little odds and ends (and candy! I get the leftovers!) that I put in them.  I make up a wicked Easter basket, too - even though nobody at our house has believed in the poor old Easter bunny for ages.

Unionist

Slumberjack wrote:

So as I read, it was Yehoshuah and Caleb who carried on with the murderous rampage throughout the region, after which they impregnated one another, and the begatting started all over again?

Um, no, SJ. Those two were the only ones who left Egypt and survived the 40-year alleged trek through the desert to go murder and slaughter in Canaan. Besides them, there were all the children and grandchildren of the émigrés. They were not punished for the sins of their parents (worshipping the golden calf, and yearning for the lost fleshpots of Egypt, when Moses was late coming back from his chat with Yahweh on Mount Sinai).

 

Slumberjack

Well I'm not up on religion, but based on that the probabilities alone appear to be in your favour.

cco

Timebandit wrote:

There are parents who worry about that, cco, and others who, like yourself, make the statement, but really, I don't think I know anybody who was scarred by believing in Santa.

Who said anything about being scarred? It's an important lesson to learn, and they'll pick up on it by the time they're teenagers anyway, Santa or no Santa.

Then again, my parents were on the gleefully sadistic side when it came to the Santa thing to begin with. When I was 6 or 7 I got a lump of coal for no other reason than that my father thought it would be hilarious. It wasn't too sad a tradition to lose.

Hey, maybe we can modernize the story into a fable for the iPhone generation: Baby's First Omnipresent Surveillance. Get 'em used to it while it still comes bearing gifts.

Quote:

I just don't buy that kids process the end of the Santa myth as you've described - that's a very adult way of looking at it, and kids are wired very differently.

I don't agree, not for the whole age spread we're talking in this thread (3 to 12). I may have been on the naïve side at 12, but I certainly had no trouble understanding that adults lied to each other and to children for the same array of venal reasons children do. Really, I think most children understand that much after the first time they're told "it won't hurt a bit."

All that said, parents can decide for themselves how much they want to lie to their children, but doing it because the other parents will get pissed off if someone contradicts their lies seems...misguided to me. Especially since it's not like the Santa thing helped a whole lot when an identical shitstorm rained down over me not believing in the season's other mascot, that Jesus guy.

Quote:

You know, you could make the same argument about fiction.  Is fiction all lies, or is there a reality to it that goes beyond the strictly fact-based world?  I like to think it's the former. 

Huh?

6079_Smith_W

I'm more concerned about grown adults holding ontotheir myths

http://www.uproxx.com/tv/2013/12/fox-news-host-megyn-kelly-santa-claus-w...

You'd think any good corporate booster would remember that jolly white Santa was invented by Coca Cola:

http://www.coca-colacompany.com/holidays/the-true-history-of-the-modern-...

6079_Smith_W

Now this is good:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/10513229/Santa-is-not-real-vica...

Santa Claus, Cannibal Fighter.

I heard the story that the historical figure  used to toss dowry money through windows.

MegB

We don't go on a shopping spree during the holiday season, and didn't when we had lots of income. Our youngest doesn't expect big-ticket items because we've never bought them. We always make sure we get a few things on her very modest list, and her grown up sisters always get her thoughtful and practical gifts. She doesn't do without, but I've always tried to make Christmas about family, friends, baking and cooking, and small traditions like watching the Alastair Sim version of A Christmas Carol on Christmas Eve. It's good to see that she sees me making handmade gifts for people, as opposed to lining up to pay for over-priced crap, and appreciates that the thought and work and time that goes into those gifts is enjoyable and appreciated. She also knows that not everyone celebrates the holiday and that lots of kids' parents can't afford much of anything (and not because I hammered it home or guilted her about the poverty of others - she's just cool that way). Most of our holiday budget goes to food and baking ingredients, and craft materials, which is how I think it should be. As a former Christmas-hater, I do the holiday the way I do now so that I don't have to hate and dread it, so that it's fun for everyone instead of stressful.

shartal@rogers.com

Boom Boom where did you find those delicious photos including he sees you when you're sleeping, the drowned Jesus and the meat nativity? I would love to repost them

Aristotleded24

6079_Smith_W wrote:
I have told my kids I don't believe in any god, and that when we stop, we stop. Our eldest says he believes in a god (and while I haven't pressed too hard on it, I wonder where he got that from).

We say God works in mysterious ways! ;)

6079_Smith_W wrote:
The best thing I can do is tell them what I believe (you are absolutely right there) and insist they examine it and figure it out for themselves.

On a more serious note, I absolutely agree. Sure make your own case, but people will come to their own conclusions based on their own lives.

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